Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Gaetano's Farm

My friend and colleague Pat has a Sicilian gentlemen friend named Gaetano who owns what they call “a farm” on the slopes of Etna. I was invited to a party there last weekend on a sunny, summer like day. The “farm” is a large acreage of grapes, fruit trees, and other truck farm produce right smack dab in the middle of a half dozen little Sicilian towns and villages. There is a beautiful view of Etna to the north and the sea to the south.

The party was held at an elevated stone “hut” in the middle of all the fields. The hut is actually set up like a picnic area with a grill, tables, benches, etc. About twenty-five guests gathered to socialize, eat, and drink (our favorite activities here). We had lots of wine to share and wonderful food of all kinds all prepared by Gaetano and Pat and their friends. Of course, there was pasta—this one in garlicky oil with herbs and breadcrumbs. Delicious spicy and greasy Italian sausage was grilled and served all around. Apparently, one can go to the butcher shop and get this made with anything you want in it (i.e. olives, pistachios, peppers). There was a birthday, complete with a cake and candles, and then several types of desserts, from American brownies to delicate Italian decorated “cookies.” Mmmmmm. One of everything? I had to go easy, though, as there was another party (homemade pizza) that evening. Sigh.


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